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Social Security Benefits

Question for Department for Work and Pensions

UIN 7121, tabled on 23 January 2020

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the effect of the two-child limit on BAME communities.

Answered on

28 January 2020

The Government’s view is that providing support for a maximum of two children or qualifying young persons in Universal Credit and Child Tax Credits, ensures fairness between claimants on the one hand and, on the other, those taxpayers who support themselves solely through work.

We recognise that some claimants are not able to make the same choices about the number of children in their family, which is why exceptions have been put in place to protect certain groups. On migration to Universal Credit, families’ existing entitlement will be protected.

The Department has published an Impact Assessment which noted ethnic minority households may be more affected by the policy. This is because on average, they are more likely to have larger families and be in receipt of Child Tax Credits and Universal Credit. However, the Department does not collect sufficiently robust data on our claimants’ ethnic or religious backgrounds to facilitate a more detailed assessment of the policy’s impact on specific ethnic or religious groups.

The Government has assessed the impact of the policy from an equality and human rights perspective, meeting our obligations under the Public Sector Equality Duty, and ensuring compliance with the Human Rights Act 1998, the Equality Act 2010 and the UN Convention on the rights of children.

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